What Skills Can You Barter in SHTF or TEOTWAWKI?

Preppers often think in terms of extra supplies or equipment to survive an extended SHTF situation or even TEOTWAWKI. But at some point, those supplies will run out. And even if you chose the Lone Wolf prepper mode, at some point you are going to have to interact with other people. Very few preppers have the skills and lifelong experience to totally live off the land.

At some point, groups of people will band together. Some will have prior to the event, some after. For long-term sustainability, you better have some skill(s)  that you are good at to barter with. And I don’t think stock brokerage would be a useful one. Once the initial chaos settles down, those who survive will need to be useful.  So lets look at some of the skills or experience that would be useful to others that you might trade for what you need. I will group these into broad categories.

Operation in Nahr-e SarajThe Protector: If you have serious military, police, or security experience, you might be valuable to people who need to be organized to protect themselves. Leadership experience in any of these would be a plus. Can you organize a bunch of former shopkeepers, Wallmart workers, factory workers, stock brokers,  etc. into an effective defense force? Can you teach these subjects as well as lead? Are you familiar with any martial arts? Can you teach weaponcraft?

The Healer: Doctor, Dentist, Nurse, or EMT. If you have any serious training or skills inThe_Doctor_Luke_Fildes_crop the medical professions, you are going to be extremely valuable. Start working now on learning natural healing herbs and ways to provide medical help without the luxury of a staffed emergency room. Stocking up on meds and equipment would be a good idea. You may want to enhance your skills to include veterinary capability.

lossy-page1-800px-NRCSCT07047_-_Connecticut_(716026)(NRCS_Photo_Gallery)_tifThe Farmer: Do you know how to grow food crops? Evaluate soil? Tend food-producing farm animals such as chickens, goats, pigs or cows? You could be the food producer. Can you keep bees? Know how to dig a well?

The Fixer: Having mechanical training in order to repair usable items will be essential.Kovář_při_práci_(Velikonoční_trhy_na_Václavském_náměstí)_055 Are you a car mechanic, a blacksmith, a gunsmith, a plumber?  Can you repair small appliances and small engines? Electronic repair (yes, some electronics will still work and people will figure out how to harness water power for electricity again).

The Builder: Are you a carpenter, or contractor? Do you have experience in architecture? or construction? Can you pour cement properly? Build a wood building? And have you stocked the non power tools that will still work to do it all?

The Householder: Can you make clothes, repair clothes or make soap? Can you spin wool into yarn to make clothes? Are you familiar with canning, dehydrating, sealing, smoking, and storing food? Can you tan and work leather?

The Scrounger: This is a unique individual. Every military unit tries to have one of these. This individual has a viable imagination combined with intense curiosity. His value? The scrounger can look at a pile of scrap metal and see 14 usable tools where everyone else only sees scrap metal. He has an instinctive feeling for where things may have been hidden or stored.Junk99

The above is just an overview sample of skill sets that would be valuable in an extended SHTF or even TEOTWAWKI situation. I’m sure you can think of a lot more. The point here is that if you survive the initial chaos and live to see people coming together again, you had better have some useful skills to contribute to the group, or to barter with. Because there isn’t going to be any “public assistance”.

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7 thoughts on “What Skills Can You Barter in SHTF or TEOTWAWKI?

  1. Spent over 20 years as a professional chef,ran 4 star hotel and private country club kitchens as the executive chef,also cooked on commercial fishing boats,and for an outfitter on backcountry elk hunts.
    There’s a lot more to feeding medium to large sized groups than most people realize-and it’s also very easy to make those groups of people very sick if you don’t know what you’re doing.
    Been canning the harvest from our gardens for over ten years,and have canning recipes dating back to my great grandmother.

    Spent another 20 years in the building trades,still doing home repair/remodeling now.
    I know how to build homes/buildings from foundation to roof,with or without basement,and have the hand tools to do so without power tools.

    I’ve always-(since I was 15 or so)- done all my own car and small engine repairs,and have all the tools needed to repair just about any engine outside of large diesels,as I don’t have the required tools.
    Almost all car/truck repairs can be done using only hand tools.
    I can weld using stick or wire feed,braze and solder.

    I’m a lifelong hunter and fisherman,have hunted/hunt small game,big game,upland birds,and occasionally ducks and geese.
    Have also run traplines,back in the days before PETA and other assorted animal “rights” whackos started throwing red paint on furs people were wearing.
    Have done a lot of hunting way,way,way off the road,hiked in and out and/or rode horses and mules in and out.
    I butcher all my own game animals,know how to filet fish quickly and efficiently,also know how to smoke meats and fish to preserve them.
    Can navigate using map and compass,knowledgeable about wilderness survival and first aid,edible wild plants and plants that can be used as medicines.

    I think I’ll be okay if or when a SHTF event happens.

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